Up against one of the best teams in the world, the Philippine Women’s National Football Team demonstrated a resolute performance in a 0-4 loss against Australia in the AFC Women’s Asian Cup 2022, Monday evening, at the Mumbai Football Arena in Mumbai.
“It’s an outstanding performance,” said Philippines coach Alen Stajcic. “I couldn’t be any prouder of the way that they fought and battled and the effort was outstanding against a really, truly world-class team.
Following a goalless first period, the Filipinas ultimately succumbed to the Matildas’ pressure when the former conceded twice in just three minutes.
Australia skipper Sam Kerr opened the floodgates with the header off a corner at the 51st minute. Filipina defender Dominique Randle then accidentally headed the ball into her own net in the 53rd minute.
Swedish coach Tony Gustaffson’s side then found a third goal at the 68th minute.
Midfielder Emily Van-Egmond saw her initial attempt cleared off the line. However, Van-Egmond was at the right place to put the ball into the back of the net eventually. Another midfielder, Mary Fowler, then scored Australia’s fourth goal at the 88th minute to mark the convincing win.
The second half very much undid the Philippines’ good work beforehand as the Filipinas played a disciplined first 45 minutes. Chandler McDaniel had a glorious opportunity to bag a goal early in the game but her attempt went wide.
On the other hand, the Matildas, led by talismanic forward Kerr, bombarded goalkeeper Kiara Fontanilla’s goal but were left frustrated after drawing a blank at the halftime whistle.
“For our players to step up to that level and be able to hold them out for 50 minutes and only really concede off a corner from Sam Kerr — who is probably the best header of the ball in the last 10 to 15 years in women’s football, it just shows the resilience that the team showed,” added Stajcic.
The result leaves the Philippines in 2nd place in Group B with 3 points. On the other hand, Australia secured a ticket to the knockouts with 6 points.
The Philippines shall take on Indonesia in its final Group B assignment, where a win would secure passage to the knockout round. That match will be played on Thursday, January 27, 2022, 10:00 PM (Manila time).
Philippines XI: Randle, Long (C), McDaniel, Miclat, Bugay, Castañeda, Frilles, Harrison, Bolden, Madarang, Fontanilla (GK).
Australia XI: Polkinghorne, Catley, Foord, Van Egmond, Fowler, Micah (GK), Yallop, Kennedy, Simon, Kerr (C) , Carpenter.